180

Jenny Scheinman: Shalagaster

AAJ Staff By
Published:
Views: 6,816
Jenny Scheinman: Shalagaster
Tzadik's Oracle series, dedicated to creative female artists, is now in its ninth reincarnation, after memorable releases by Susie Ibarra and Yuka Honda, among others. Shalagaster draws its strength from the warm, melodic sound of Jenny Scheinman's violin, funneled into a series of relatively low-key original compositions. Varied international flavor comes through in the form of the undercurrents of "Tango For Luna," the kicking wedding dance of "Wiseacre," and the almost military "See Through."

Scheinman belongs to the relatively sparse community of jazz violinists, and she distinguishes herself here with a strong feel for heartland harmonies and a tone that varies from sinuous to full-bodied, though most of the time it lies at the latter extreme. Her quintet retains bassist Trevor Dunn and drummer Kenny Wollesen from her previous release, The Rabbi's Lover, augmented with the sparse but welcome piano (plus harmonium) of Myra Melford and trumpet of Russ Johnson (best enjoyed with a mute).

The compositions (all but one by Scheinman) are mostly dark, minor-key and slow-paced. The sparse, overtone-rich tune "The Lucky Hum" turns the volume down about four notches, returning regularly to a theme that resembles the titular musical phrase from "A Love Supreme." Kenny Wollesen is the only other prominent voice on this piece (other than a shadowy human voice), and his brush and cymbal work complement the tune's transition from stark loneliness to bluesy contemplation.

Scheinman has collaborated with Bill Frisell, and the melody of her "New View of the Horse" sounds exactly like the his "Tales from the Far Side" ( Quartet, Nonesuch, 1996) in just about every respect (including instrumentation). I don't want to point any fingers here, but I'd say that's not a good move. Otherwise, the set is uniformly solid, persistently inviting, and just mysterious enough to offer intrigue without becoming perplexing.


Track Listing: Into The Clearing; American Dipper; Tango For Luna; Milk Bottle; The Lucky Hum; Wiseacre; New View Of The Horse; American Dipper; Nigun; Zeynebin; See Through.

Personnel: Jenny Scheinman - Violin; Myra Melford - Piano, Harmonium; Russ Johnson - Trumpet; Trevor Dunn - Bass; Kenny Wollesen - Drums.

Year Released: 2004 | Record Label: Tzadik | Style: Modern Jazz


Shop For Jazz

District Jazz
CD/LP/Track Review
Interviews
CD/LP/Track Review
Read more articles
The Littlest Prisoner
The Littlest Prisoner
Sony Masterworks
2014
buy
Mischief & Mayhem
Mischief & Mayhem
Self Produced
2012
buy
Mischief and Mayhem
Mischief and Mayhem
Self Produced
2012
buy
Jenny Scheinman
Jenny Scheinman
KOCH Records
2008
buy
Crossing The Field
Crossing The Field
KOCH International Jazz
2008
buy
12 Songs
12 Songs
Cryptogramophone
2005
buy
John Zorn John Zorn
sax, alto
Charlie Hunter Charlie Hunter
guitar, 8-string
Ned Rothenberg Ned Rothenberg
saxophone
Guy Klucevsek Guy Klucevsek
accordion

More Articles

Post a comment

comments powered by Disqus

Support All About Jazz's Future

We need your help and we have a deal. Contribute $20 and we'll hide the six Google banner ads that appear on every page for a full year!

Fund All About Jazz's Future